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Massive Manhattan Seizure

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Massive Manhattan Counterfeit Seizure

Richard F Watts III

November 17, 2023


The US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York has announced that police have uncovered and seized over $1 billion of counterfeit goods in Manhattan. Two men have been arrested in connection to the distribution and storage of these illegal goods. The seizure of over 200,000 counterfeit luxury goods is the biggest in US history. A bond hearing was held as these two men are facing an extended prison sentence and lucrative bond holding.

According to CNN, Adama Sow, 38, and Abdulai Jalloj, 48, have been arrested after police uncovered 219,000 knock-off luxury items in a Manhattan-based storage facility that was used as a distribution center. Sow and Jalloj have been accused of trafficking these goods from the facility as well as other facilities between January and October. 

According to the US Customs and Border Control, the selling and buying of these counterfeit items, “could result in civil or criminal penalties and purchasing counterfeit goods often times supports criminal activities such as forced labor or human trafficking”

During their bond hearing, a judge set Sow’s bond at $1 million and Jalloj’s at $500,000. Police found more goods at two separate sites controlled by each. Sow’s offsite location saw 83,000 items taken by police which totaled an additional $502 million. Jalloj’s site resulted in 50,000 items seized totaling $237 million. The total haul of recovered merchandise is said to hold an approximate retail value of $1.03 billion which is the largest seizure in US history. Bags, shoes, and clothes are some of the merchandise found. The scheme hurt several local legitimate business owners as well as the larger known luxury vendors found predominantly in the New York City fashion market.


US Attorney Damian Williams said, “This is a testament to the commitment of This Office and its law enforcement partners to combat counterfeit trafficking in New York City". Sow and Jalloh are facing a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison. Their attorney wished to not make a statement at this time.


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